There is no such thing as a “perfect marriage!” Why? Because there is sin in the world, and marriage involves two sinners. Although marriage may never be perfect, our goal should always be 1 Peter 1:15
“But just as He who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
We are called to be holy as God Himself is holy. However, as we persevere to be holy, we may run into a few residual affects of our sin, one of those being selfishness.
How many of you fight with your spouse?
I know I do!
James 4:1 asks,
“What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something, but you don’t get it.”
There is no other way to describe what James is talking about.
Our selfish desires stir within us and cause us to fight with our spouse. There may be something tangible, or maybe a specific word spoken, or an act to be done, that WE WANT… and when our spouse does not comply… we fight.
James continues in verse 2:
“You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with the wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your own pleasures.”
God desires that we go to Him and ask for things, however, He is also aware of our motives. Make sure that you evaluate your motives the next time you find yourself arguing with your spouse.
James further explains how we need to keep ourselves from fighting in verses 7:
“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and He will come near to you.”
And verse 10,
“Humble yourself before the Lord, and He will lift you up.”
Our motives are the motivations behind our actions. God is watching to see if our motives are pure or for selfish gain. To be sure we do not harbor selfish motives, we must go to the Lord in prayer and evaluate ourselves. The more we draw near to God and understand His ways, God will bring us through the process of sanctification, resulting in holiness. We also need to make sure that we are resisting the devil.
If your desire is to not fight in marriage… stop being selfish! If your spouse is trying to fight because of selfishness, bring your requests to the Lord in faith that He will help your spouse to understand!